Empire on Lenin - The 'burbs

Victor vrosado at ic.sunysb.edu
Tue Dec 11 10:46:36 MST 2001

on 12/11/01 12:08 PM, Charles Brown at CharlesB at CNCL.ci.detroit.mi.us wrote:

> 1) The scientific and technological revolution especially in transportation
> and communication "machinery" has resulted in Marx's "cooperation" turning
> into its opposite, being overcome by machinery. The capitalist do not have to
> group large numbers of workers in large factories to maximize the extraction
> of relative surplus value( See Marx's discussion of relative surplus value and
> the factory system in _Capital_ I). This technological development allowed the
> capitalists to geographically and territorially scatter the points of
> production., undermining the classic Leninist factory scenario , the workers'
> direct sensing of their strength in numbers , working class ghettos

Riffing on this point, I was wondering how does the rise of the suburb, if
at all,  have in aiding in the 'scattering' of workers.  Someone once told
me that there is no such thing as the working class, because people don't
work and live near factories (?).  And yet I live in between at least 3 huge
industrial parks! And of course my father has to wake up at 3:30 in the
morning to go to work in the city, commuting 2 hours round trip each day.
Also there is some kind of myth floating around that if you live in Long
Island you are middle class or rich.

What are the political implications of this problem? In other words, how do
you mobilize people and organize when they got to drive everywhere and live
1-3 hours from the major city centers?  I think a ton of practical problems
emerge that no one I know of has begun to address.

I was wondering if there are any good books on this issue.  If not, I'll
write one some day.  Someone contact Verso for me.


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